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Local officials have done a good job of beautifying, cleaning up county
I would like to express a long-overdue note of thanks to our board of commissioners, past and present, who are responsible for beautifying and cleaning up many areas of our county. The Furys Ferry Road corridor in particular is very attractive. The new plantings and four-lane highway make for a pleasant drive.

Wrong team noted: Flip-flop-wearing women were from Northwestern
In Barry Paschal's Aug. 1 column, he wrote: "Speaking of capturing memories, remember when the U.S. Women's Soccer Team visited the White House, and fashionistas criticized some of the women for wearing flip-flops?

Tried-and-true methods make gardens grow
Check in just about any time of the year, and J.C. Butler has something growing in his garden.

Street's namesake is misspelled on sign
In the sleepy southern Columbia County community of Berzelia runs a quiet street off Gordon Highway that historians say is named for a landowner and Civil War veteran.

Columbia isn't one-horse county
Aiken County might be the horse capital of the Augusta area, but federal and local officials say horse ownership in Columbia County is gaining in popularity even as the county becomes more urbanized.

Changes helped put Martinez on 'best places' list
Since Jim Deer opened Martinez Gold nearly 30 years ago, he said, Martinez has changed tremendously.

Seniors can get paid to tutor
Senior citizens wanting to lend a hand and pad a pocket now have an opportunity to do both.

Sisters have no fear on vacation
Last week, Anna and Audra Dekle were exploring the Alaskan wild, watching humpback whales glide across the Alaskan waters and observing bears beyond their wildest imaginations.

Fig growing is easier than you think
This is one of my favorite times of the year. Not because of the heat and humidity, but because my favorite fruit to eat is in season: the fig.

District human resources veteran retires
The Columbia County school system's human resources department has undergone a number of changes through the years.

Group to assess 911 call center
The Columbia County Sheriff's Office is seeking public input during the triennial assessment of its 911 dispatch center.

American Cancer Society wants volunteer drivers
The American Cancer Society is seeking more volunteer drivers for its Road to Recovery program to ensure that those suffering from cancer and in need of transportation get the health care they need.

Vacation Gallery
Billy and Doris Field of Evans held a family gathering in March in honor of her 82nd birthday.

Current events
Stephanie's Dancers, at 717 Industrial Park Drive, in Evans, will hold registration for tap, ballet and jazz classes for ages 2 and older from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11. For information, call (706) 650-0366, or go to www.stephaniesdancers.com.

Time Capsule
As reported 37 years ago in the pages of The Columbia News, Wednesday, Aug. 5, 1970:

Divorces
Debra M. Conder and Johnnie R. Conder, July 13, 2007.

Riverside Middle School Honor Roll
Fourth nine weeks honor roll for Riverside Middle School.

Police blotter
The following accounts were taken from reports filed with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office:

Photo: Bonita Springs vacation
Bob Reese and his children Patrick Michael, 2, (center) and Flynn, 3, enjoyed a day on their grandparents' boat while visiting Bonita Springs, Fla. The family camped, swam and rode personal watercraft during their vacation.

DUIs
Jessica Marie Bondurant, 26, of the 300 block of Westmont Drive in Martinez, was charged with driving under the influence on July 1 and was fined $810.

Property transfers
Euchee Creek Investors Inc. to Todd S. Broome and Lara T. Broome, 441 Bartram Ridge, $65,000.

Newsmakers
Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle has appointed Dr. George Snelling, of Martinez, to serve on the board of the Georgia State Properties Commission.

Photo: Bank opening
Former 10th District U.S. Rep. Doug Barnard cut the ribbon July 19 on the new Evans Express branch for Georgia Bank and Trust Co.

Photo: Southern Siding opens new location
Southern Siding and Window Company held a ribbon cutting ceremony with the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce at their Bobby Jones Expressway location on July 27.

Greyhound of the week
Shamrock Wilson is a 3-year-old black male greyhound, approximately 75 pounds. He is very gentle and a little on the shy side.

Photo: Student earns martial arts degrees
Brandon Lane, 17 of Martinez and a student of Warrior Jiu-Jitsu at Patriots Park tested for multiple Black Belts on July 28.

Get Up and Go
The Columbia County Extension Service's Gardening at Lunch series will be at 12:10 p.m. Wednesday at the Columbia County Library, with the presentation Planting in Clay, by extension agent Charles Phillips.

Michael Vick: Friend of dogs
Michael Vick is every bit as entitled to his day in court as anyone else accused of a crime. But as I have said in other cases: The presumption of innocence applies only to the members of a jury.

If county has lost clout, how can we tell?
In a recent story in The Chronicle, some officials lamented the loss of Columbia County's political clout.

Costs for health care make you sick
Ironically, one of the truest marks of maturity is arriving at a point in life where you aren't so sure of yourself, where many of the "absolutes" you once held sacrosanct no longer exist.

Football teams getting ready
High school football practices began across the county as the first day of noncontact team practices began Wednesday for most local teams.

Bratton makes mark in CFL
Lakeside fans watching ESPN's Sportscenter on July 27 saw a familiar face on the screen. Former Panther football star Brian Bratton was on the highlight show and in the best possible spot in the program.

Sports Calendar
A free conditioning camp is held at Blanchard Park every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday through August. Saturday camps will run from 10 to 11:30 a.m., and Tuesday and Thursday camps will run from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

County team wins World Series
Columbia County welcomed home another Dixie World Series championship team Thursday after the recreation department's crew of 11- and 12-year-old all-stars claimed the Dixie Youth "O" Zone title in Troy, Ala.

Athletes begin team practices
To cut or not to cut: That is the question many local coaches are facing this weekend as the traditional tryout period comes to a close.

Ex-Panther now ready for life as a Wildcat
Former Lakeside High School standout Chris Drayton had a solid prep career. He was a three-time all-county performer and was named all-region and all-area as both a junior and senior.

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